Why Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Are Skipping Queen Elizabeth II's Pre-Christmas Party

Last month, it was confirmed that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle "will spend the holiday this year, as a new family, with the Duchess' mother Doria Ragland."

By Elyse Dupre Dec 16, 2019 2:20 PMTags
Watch: Meghan Markle & Prince Harry to Take Break & Bring Archie to U.S.

Christmas is right around the corner, and Queen Elizabeth is celebrating the season with a slew of festivities. While many members of the royal family are expected to attend the holiday gatherings, a report claims that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle may miss out on the fun.

According to The Daily Mail, citing sources, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex will not attend the annual party at Buckingham Palace Monday night. The outlet also claims the couple will miss the traditional pre-Christmas lunch at the palace on Wednesday.

However, this shouldn't come as a huge surprise to royal admirers. Back in October, The Sunday Times reported the proud parents would be taking a six-week break, starting in November, to enjoy some "family time" with their son Archie Harrison and Meghan's mother Doria Ragland.

"The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are looking forward to extended family time towards the end of this month," a spokesperson for the Sussexes later confirmed. "Having spent the last two Christmases at Sandringham, Their Royal Highnesses will spend the holiday this year, as a new family, with the Duchess' mother Doria Ragland."

The statement also noted that "the decision is in line with precedent set previously by other members of the Royal Family and has the support of Her Majesty the Queen." As fans will recall, Prince William and Kate Middleton spent the holidays with the Middletons in 2012.

Meghan Markle Once Again Breaks Royal Tradition

So, how have Harry and Meghan been enjoying the holiday season so far? During an episode of The HeirPod podcast, ABC News royal contributor Omid Scobie said "they celebrated Thanksgiving privately with close family." In November, Vanity Fair also reported Harry and Meghan were spending Thanksgiving with Doria in the United States and that there was a chance the two may stay in the U.S. for the entire holiday season.

"The plans have not been finalized," a source told the magazine last month. "They will be in America for Thanksgiving later this month and there's a chance they might choose to say out there a while longer, which might mean missing Christmas."

Toby Melville /PA Wire

But could Harry and Meghan also be working during their break? Last week, The Telegraph reported that Meghan is using this time to plan out a U.S. launch of the Sussex Royal Foundation. Although, the Sussexes haven't commented on the report.